Some parents love the idea of naming their baby boy something trendy, while others could never dream of choosing a popular baby name for their little one. If you’re in the second camp, then you’re probably on the lookout for some unique and rare boy names to add to your list of considerations. Truth be told, the hardest part about this won’t be finding the names, it’ll be picking one because they’re all so great.
Every parent has their own priorities when it comes to choosing a name for their baby. As someone whose name was the second most popular choice for girls the year that I was born, finding uncommon baby names for my kids was an absolute must for me. You don’t have to have a super-common name to want a rare boy name for your baby, though; a lot of parents just want their child to stand out. The only tricky part is choosing a name that stands out in a good way, not because it's so strange (unlike Elon Musk’s decision to name his child X Æ A-12).
Thankfully, there are plenty of rare boy names that are able to hit that balance. Here are some of my favorites.
There was a time when Nolan was a more widely-used name, but nowadays, it’s considered pretty unique. It’s an Irish name that means noble and champion, both of which are pretty fantastic (what parent wouldn’t want their baby to be those things?).
You might have heard this name somewhat recently since it was the name of Sabrina’s cousin on Chilling Adventures of Sabrina, but that’s because he was well over 75 years old which is about the last time the name was even somewhat common. It’s certainly not something you hear often now, so maybe your little one should be the one to bring it back to life.
If you’re a parent, then you may see this name and instantly think of Flynn Rider from Tangled, but how many other Flynns do you know besides him? Few if any, to be sure. Honestly, all of these other parents are missing out because it’s a cute name that any kid would be lucky to have.
Meaning “wealthy,” Otto is a rare boy name that goes back to the seventh century. It’s certainly not one that you hear often these days, but that doesn’t change the fact that it’s actually pretty cute. Plus, if he does end up striking it rich, maybe he’ll decide to share the money with you since you so thoughtfully gave him that destiny when you decided on his name.
Zyon is a Hebrew name from Israel that can be found in the bible, but you’ll probably have a hard time finding it anywhere around now. It means “second son” and, if nothing else, it just sounds really cool.
As a fan of Flight of the Conchords, when I hear this name my mind immediately goes to Jermaine Clement, but besides that, it’s definitely not something I hear very often. And, honestly, there are much worse B-list celebrities you could name your kid after than this silly comedian.
Since it means “son of Gilbert,” you’re probably not going to pick this name for your baby based on its meaning (unless your name is Gilbert, I suppose). However, that shouldn’t stop you from considering the rare boy name, because it’s just different enough to be really cool.
Knox is a Scottish name that means “round hill,” which I’m not really sure what to do with that information, but like so many other names on this list, it doesn’t take away from how great this name is. Seriously, throw an “x” into a name and it’s pretty much instantly cool.
The name Hayes has English origins and means “hedged area.” I don’t know about you, but I’m starting to see a pattern here. Maybe all of these names became so uncommon because parents started paying too much attention to their meaning than to the name itself. Oh well, their loss is your gain.
When you hear Atlas, your mind may immediately go to those giant maps our parents used to pull out for long road trips. Thankfully we have GPS nowadays, so those things are near obsolete at this point which opens up the possibility of giving your baby boy this name. It has Greek origins (Atlas was a Titan) and means “to carry” or “bearer of the heavens.”
Cue up some Britney Spears, because the name Felix means “lucky.” It has Latin roots and is rarely used in the US these days, which means it’s ready for a revival and is a fantastic choice for someone looking for rare boy names.
There doesn’t seem to be a consensus on the meaning behind the name Jett (it’s been said to mean anything from “geological material” to “jet-black”), but that doesn’t take away from its uniqueness. It’s not a name you’ll hear often (if at all) outside of the US and Australia, and even then it’s by no means a popular name.
You might be used to hearing the name Sasha for girls, but the masculine Sascha has been around a long time. It has German and Russian origins and means “defending warrior,” which is pretty good if you ask me (especially compared to some of the other names on this list).
If you name your baby Wilder, you should just go ahead and expect him to live up to his name which means “wild animal.” Having a wild kid isn’t a bad thing, though, because the wild ones are usually the silly kids who keep you on your toes and make life interesting.
Meaning “strength” and “courageous,” Oz is a Hebrew name that goes back centuries. As far as today goes, you probably associate it with The Wizard of Oz or Dr. Oz (*cringe*), but it’s rarely used as a first name and that’s a shame because it’s a very cool, unique option.
Hutton is an English name that seems to be derivative of other names and means “ridge enclosure” (I’m not entirely sure what to do with that, but at least it isn’t a bad meaning). It’s a great choice for parents who want a more unique spin on a more popular name, like Hudson.
Depending on who you ask, Wren can either mean “small bird” or “king of the birds;” either way if you’re a fan of birds then consider giving your little one this name. It’s rare enough that you probably won’t come across another little Wren in your kid’s class one day, but not so rare that people don’t know how to pronounce it.
With Greek-Jewish origins, Adler was once a common surname but has since become more commonly used as a first name. It means “eagle” and it’s a good alternative to more popular names like Aiden or even Allen.
Hugo has German, Spanish, and Portuguese roots and means “mind” or “intellect” (so, you can reasonably expect your kid to be somewhat bright with a name like this, right?). There was a time this name was popular, but over the last few decades it seems to have dropped off the radar, so it’s an excellent choice for your little boy.
While you can certainly choose to follow in Elon Musk’s footsteps and give your baby a very, very unique name, it’s probably easier for everyone if you stick with one of these rare boy names instead.
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